• Chunny Baker

Project Analysis



We have reached a point in time where we can say the Ghost project is “done” where we have film to call our own, with imperfections and all. During this project I was technically the Art director for the film, being in charge of the overall style and look of the project. I say technically since I don't think I adequately fulfilled this role for the project. Sure I worked on creating the style chart for the project which went through multiple iterations throughout the duration of the project. But towards the last part of the project changes that I made to the frame eventually went unnoticed then fading into a point of a forgotten side project as more pressing parts of the project popped up.

Creating these style frames has helped the project decide on a general direction for the film but I think in creating these frames I had a bit of a different direction than the director. On the plus side, this process of creating new iterations of the style chart was a nice experience to get more comfortable with photoshop, and working with colour.

With this project, I worked on creating the exterior backgrounds and working on some of the animation for the film. For this, I think I have managed an acceptable quality deliverable. Nothing amazing nothing too crappy. Each of the deliverables were enough to get the project done but nothing to make the film stand out.

Through this project I have realised I need to work further work on my time management skills, I need to work on improving my ability to estimate how long something will take me to complete.

There were many instances working on particular parts of the project where even without any problems the job would take longer than expected. I would set out to do a job or a list of jobs then not getting anywhere near completion for the set tasks in the allocated time frame. If we add this slow progress to the lack of time allocated to potential problems arising it adds up to a lot of time on the project for limited progress.

What I think has worked well is my willingness to take on challenges, Taking on the role as art director and working on backgrounds where I have had limited experience with colour was an interesting challenge where I feel I tackled it despite my perceived lack of skill. Each time I had to redo an iteration I accepted the process of having to redo accepting it as a challenge that helps experience.

With the later stages of the project where I was faced with a war against Maya as it sent an onslaught of crashes my way, I faced this problem head-on attempting every known and not known way to try and solve the issues with the crashes.

With the film being “Done” what is good about the film is It has very glowy looking aesthetic, The editor did well in wrestling the film together to make it looking Shiny. This aesthetic comes close to one of the original goals set for the film. The film has a sense of charm to it that would be appealing to a younger audience, this reaches one of the director's goals for the project.

Something that doesn't quite work with this project is the ghost sounds, the ghosts have a distorted eco miscellaneous sound which does sound cool. But every movement or action the ghosts make they make a sound, this starts to bleed into each previous sound until it ends up being a bit of a mess. It draws me back to all the kid shows that didn't have talking characters but just made sounds, I always hated these shows growing up. Yet we were aiming to create a film for a young audience, we succeeded in creating a film my childhood self would have turned off. If the sounds were placed at say notable emotional or situational changes of the characters this could have made the film less grating on the ears.

Having a solid pipeline or guide for setting up the scenes, with regards to rendering and lighting we would have a more consistent stronger piece. The lighting artists gave us settings to set up for each character. I am unsure if these settings accommodated for each scene being built differently or the character placed in different parts of Maya. In hindsight we as a team could have created a set of guidelines such as light the characters from “X” direction so no matter of the scene set up it would work.

This project was to be created in a response to a social issue, For this project, Ghostly relations looked at the theme of dealing with branching away from what is expected from family. I do not think this film succeeds I feel for this film to have worked The characters would have to branch further away or have more growth. In this film, the kid ghost, in the end, is still doing what is expected of them only really adding their own flavour to the tasks.

Through this project, I learnt that I struggle to work with a team where every team member is an introvert and doesn't like speaking their mind or want to give critical feedback without being pressured. As an artist, the critical feedback loop is important to help grow and become better, at times it was hard to know how was progressing with things for the project or if working on the same page.

I learnt that most of the process of creating things is dealing with curve balls. You may have the skills to create something but most of the time will be sorting out problems and little challenges that were not thought of or that would take double, triple or more time than first expected to work through.

Through this project, I learnt that I still have a long way to go in finding a work and life balance that is healthy and manageable. When working on projects I tend to lose myself in the project working through things then next thing I know is it has been hours and now my eyes are square I can't see further than a metre, my body is cramped and locked into unhealthy imbalances of RSI type injuries and bad postures. Coming to a realisation that I have ignored my bodies request for basic maintenance. When working on projects I need to set alarms or notifications that wake me from my trance so I can look after myself.

Thinking of the future generally creates a sense of anxiety within myself, But I have been facing this as a challenge to overcome and been trying to think more about it. Some goals I have been mulling around in my mind that I would like to pursue In the next two-three years

-I would like to attempt a solo animation short film, despite facing challenges of this project and knowing how much work will be involved completing a solo Animation project will help push my skills but also be super rewarding. The biggest challenge I see with this is follow through. I have a tendency to not follow through with plans or momentum Starting but rarely finishing personal projects. Having a team to work with is helpful to be accountable and get things done.

- I would like to have a Visual art exhibition, Having studying Visual Art in the past I enjoyed the experimentation process But also creating something that says something or explores a topic.With more confidence in my digital and technical abilities from SAE, believe I could create some interesting Hybrid art pieces.

Melbourne being a larger creative accommodating space then Canberra I believe I could find a gallery space to exhibit at that will welcome whatever hybrid art forms that I create.

Challenge for this most galleries only accept applicants who have work to show, and usually upwards of a year beforehand.

-Multiple Internship or workplace opportunities, Aside from the compulsory one through SAE I would like to try an additional 2 other work placement, internship or volunteer at various studios. This will help me get a feel for different environments building up experience. I would even be happy to be allowed in the studio space and just observe for a day or more.

Challenge for this would be figuring out the logistics of getting this to work If I was not doing this through SAE. Or if I was doing it through SAE the logistics of juggling multiple opportunities with the required studies.

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© 2020 by John Chunny Baker